The girl with the green lips

My husband and I went out to dinner for his birthday last night. The girl that greeted us at the door had purplish hair and green lipstick.

As a future business owner in a service industry field, my knee-jerk thought was, “Note to self, make sure employees know nothing like this will be allowed. This isn’t the look I want to portray to my customers.”  As a customer of the restaurant I found myself going, “Oh… kay…” but not really have an opinion other than that. I wasn’t turned off as much as caught off guard.

Our waitress came over, and in our chit chatting explained she’s the only “normal” employee at the restaurant, and my husband noticed another waiter had green hair. She said she doesn’t wear weird colors or have tattoos or piercings. I joked that if that was the case she was actually the weird one, and she thought about it and went, “Yeah, I guess you’re right!”

We were after awhile the only customers in the restaurant, and we’d built up a fun back and forth with our waitress. At one point she came over and she had on the green lipstick. She point blank asked us what we thought. I went, “Well. It’s… different. Interesting.” She explained she’d agreed to step out of her comfort zone and tried it, but she didn’t think she could pull it off. I tilted my head and went, “Its just… different.” Deep down I was having a moment of, “No! Green lips are not okay! Stay your unique ‘normal’ self.”

I ordered dessert to celebrate my husband’s birthday, and the other waitress — the one that had greeted us — brought it over. She took a deep breath and said, “This is going to be terrible.” and proceeded to do a fake trump blast sound effect while putting down the dessert. “That was a trump blast. Okay so it was more like a coronet. But it was SUPPOSED to be a trumpet.”

Suddenly I saw past the green lipstick. Suddenly I saw this fantastically confident and delightful young woman.

When I went to pay our check, I was confronted once again with what I thought of the green lipstick. I took a deep breath and said very honestly and with admiration (okay, at least I hope it was with admiration), “I think it takes a very confident person to pull that off.”

Over the course of about an hour, some crawfish ravioli and loaded beignet, I got an amazing lesson I’m thankful for getting.  I walked in that restaurant feeling a little weirded out by the employees, and I left it filled with deep admiration for them all.